Yuzu Brightens Skin Care

The beauty business is squeezing more out of yuzu extract (INCI: Citrus Junos) than just flavor and fragrance. In Japan, this zesty citrus fruit is popular in food and beverage, but it is also part of a traditional winter bathing ritual. The whole fruits are floated in steaming baths at winter solstice or "Toji" to ward off illnesses such as flu and colds in the coming year. The tart aroma and bright yellow color energize and fortify the body for the cold weather. Drawing on this heritage, yuzu extract primarily has been used as a scent in fragrance and bath products. However, the use of yuzu jumped almost 100% in 2008 in both the skin care and makeup categories, according to Mintel Beauty Innovation. Today, yuzu peel extract and yuzu oil are appearing as active ingredients in launches that highlight the sparkling fruit’s naturally energizing, toning and brightening properties.

Kanebo Coffret d’Or Essence Lip Base is a fragrance-free lip essence and lip gloss. It contains a fruit complex of apricot kernel oil and apricot juice as well as yuzu fruit extract to impart shine and moisture to dry lips. It adds a subtle pink hue to lips for a healthy, brightened tone.

Kosé Infinity Prime Couture Liquid Foundation is formulated with yuzu fruit, edelweiss extracts and a concentrated phospholipid to offer hydration to the skin. This long-lasting, easy-to-blend foundation claims to cover pores and wrinkles naturally and to deliver rich, lasting moisture to create a glowing, fine and elastic skin. It provides SPF 20/ PA++ protection against UV rays. It can be used year-round and is allergy tested.

The use of yuzu is not just limited to Japanese beauty brands. In the United States, Revlon introduced Age Defying Spa Foundation, an antiaging makeup to revitalize and brighten skin. It has vitamin C from grapefruit, lemon peel ferment and yuzu peel extracts, as well as antioxidant açai, grape extracts and argireline. It also contains stone therapy minerals such as hematite, malachite and azurite to energize. It claims to protect against fine lines.

The açai and yuzu peel combination is also found in Almay’s Pure Blends range. The eye shadow is made with 98.2% natural ingredients such as rice lipids, jojoba seed oil and corn starch, as well as lotus, wild pansy and papaya extracts. It is free of parabens and talcs and has been ophthalmologically tested.

Some brands are capitalizing on yuzu’s bathing heritage to move the ingredient into face cleansing products. Yves Saint Laurent focuses on yuzu’s energizing and tonic properties with its new 3 in 1 Cleansing Water. This product removes makeup, cleanses and tones. It is formulated with yuzu peel extract and African whitewood bark extract, which has antibacterial properties. It claims to refine and improve the quality of the skin, providing an intense energizing sensation.

Another cleansing product with yuzu is Mon Soin du Visage Yuzu Cold Oil. This makeup remover makes the most of the yuzu fruit’s properties. It claims yuzu stimulates lymph circulation while hydrating the epidermis and regulating sebum production. According to the creators of this niche Parisian spa brand, vitamin C and yuzu pectin contain natural saccharine said to revitalize capillary vessels, diminish pigmentation marks and wrinkles and brighten complexions. The yuzu scent reportedly helps concentration and lifts spirits in the morning while allowing for relaxation in the evening.

Within skin care, yuzu is included in face, eye and body care launches. One of the newer face creams is Kao’s Oriena Ne no Megumi (Blessing of the Root). This moisturising cream is based on six kinds of root extracts, as well as extracts of tree peony and yuzu and Japanese cypress. It claims to deliver moisture to plump the skin and leave it radiant.

Mintel highlighted the growth of yuzu in food and cocktails in 2006. Since then it appears to be following in the path of other zingy flavors like ginger and lemongrass by crossing over to beauty. While yuzu is established in Japanese cosmetic brands, it is yet to be exploited fully in Western beauty products. Yuzu offers strong potential to enhance radiance and brightening claims. It also provides opportunity as a refreshing, lifting and relaxing active in spa treatments and products.

The Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD) tracks new product launches, trends and innovations internationally. The Mintel Cosmetic Research Database tracks mass market and luxury cosmetic innovations in France and the United States. For additional information regarding either Mintel GNPD or Mintel Cosmetic Research, visit www.gnpd.com or call Mintel at 1-312-932-0600.

More in Actives